From the Delfin II in the Amazon
Mar 2, 2012 - Delfin II
Atun Poza & Pacaya River
Our expedition on the mighty Amazon continued today with a full day exploring two remote locations: Atun Poza in the morning and the Pacaya River in the afternoon.
The Pacaya River basin is one of the most important components of the Pacaya–Samiria National Reserve. The reserve is the most extensive area of protected floodable forest (varzea) in the Amazon Rainforest in South America. All over this protected area there are an incredible number of lagoons, lakes, gorges, canals, and oxbows.
Today we experienced firsthand this extraordinary biodiversity. In the morning we observed many bird species like orioles, flycatchers and big flocks of egrets. In addition to the many animal species, that include several monkey troops, we had the thrill to have our breakfast outdoors, on board the skiffs! This experience is simply amazing; encircled by the rain forest, we had our meal served in the most fashionable way, with the green surroundings and a concert of sounds as companions.
In the afternoon we had plenty of time to go far and beyond the Pacaya River. We observed several monkey species, including the large monk saki monkeys and red howler monkeys. The latter are species that are hard to find and we were very fortunate for we had extraordinary views of these big new-world primates.
Late in the afternoon we had time to swim in the middle of a beautiful lake, accompanied by the sounds of the forest and a spectacular rainbow. On the way back, as the night was coming down, we spotted an Amazon bamboo tree rat (Dactylomys dactylinus). This rodent is a large soft-furred rat with a strong, square muzzle and a very long, naked tail. It is mainly nocturnal but can be active in the late afternoon and is thus sometimes seen by day. This unusual sighting is a first for me and only the second for naturalist Rudy Flores in his life. Rudy was born and has lived all his life in the area. The latter statement tells you how unusual the sighting of this rat species is.
In the evening we arrived back on board with the wonderful feeling that we had spent a great day in one of the most intriguing and fascinating ecosystems in the imponderable Amazon.